For many years, I hid my connection to the Divine.
Born an intuitive person, with high sense perception, into a society where that sort of thing was not talked about - let alone believed in, was dauntingly challenging, to say the least.
In a world fed through both ego and mind, I found myself stumbling through life in a meager attempt to connect with my heart. The rare times I showed my gifts, my insight, myself - I was instantly shot down by the world surrounding me.
Under normal circumstances, I would not share that with you - a group of strangers, a group of friends. Tonight, however, I am opening a window to my soul.
I remember the last thing I revealed before shutting myself down entirely. It was something so insightful, all of the yogis would have agreed with me (though I did not at the time know what yoga was).
In an effort to explain these truths to my parents, I, at the brilliant age of 7, announced that I loved everybody.
"Not everybody," my father said to me.
My mother looked at me with very angry eyes. "You can't love everybody."
In an effort to win my parents' love, I uttered the name of one person who had made terrible decisions in his lifetime. Someone whom millions of people throughout the world express hatred towards, even decades after he's passed. "Fine, I don't love Hitler."
"That's better," my mother replied.
I lied. And behold, the death of the soul.
I remember very little from the time I was 7 until age 27. Much of the time was spent dissociating. Teachers called me a space cadet. Friends labeled me immature. Most avoided me. What I really wanted to say, to scream, was, I am so much more mature than you! If only you could see me!
I had allowed abuse after abuse to enter my life. Then, I allowed abuse to perpetuate. And then escalate.
I discovered a passion for water - the only place I felt safe. It was the one place I could open my heart, and still feel encouraged every day.
Dance, I had wished for. At age 8 I spoke up and made my wishes known to the world. A random father at the elementary school I was attending instantly remarked, "Oh, you're way too old to take ballet. You'll never make it."
And guess what? I believed it.
The funny part about that was - though I still have never taken a ballet lesson, numerous people upon meeting me ask me, "Are you a dancer?" usually before they ask my name. Funny, the soul knows what it wants.
Whether or not you believe in past lives or reincarnation, there were 2 fundamental facts I knew about life. They are so completely true to me that I felt like I risked my life protecting this information. Which, in a sense, I did. I created walls and blocks up around my heart so that no one would know the information - which meant many, many years of pain.
What I knew in my soul sounded like blasphemy. The things I remembered so vividly were not true in the church. I knew the meanings behind the songs, and so I sung my heart out - only to be met with contradicting actions by my elders and seemingly every member of the church.
Tonight, I will share those virtues with you:
1. Love is always the answer.
2. We, all together, make up the Divine. The Divine is not complete without each and every one of us, and yet, here we are, like a separated fragment of the Divine, here on Earth - living out this experience. It is our duty therefore to love every individual equally, no matter what decisions they make or how they may look in this lifetime.
...To be continued.